Monday, April 20, 2009

Five Day Week Straw People - Saga Records 1967

One of the rarer and more expensive of the saga records bunch released in 1967 here's some background:
This CD is actually a reissue of the self-titled 1968 album by the Five Day Week Straw People, who, like the Attack, featured guitarist John Du Cann. However, it's also about as much an Attack album as a Five Day Week Straw People album, since nine of the 19 songs are 1967-1968 era Attack demos, added to the CD as bonus tracks. It's fair, but no more than fair, British mod-psychedelia, catching the very beginning of the moment when U.K. psych started to head in a consciously heavy direction. Two of the cuts, "Freedom for You" and "Feel Like Flying," would have been the fifth Attack single had they not been dropped by Decca, and "Freedom for You" is certainly one of the best things they recorded, with a breathless, hard pop tempo and pretty good minor-key harmonies. For the most part it's pretty standard period British pop-psych, with some of the more serious and louder numbers indicating that the group might have been pretty intense Cream fans. Occasionally, as on "Magic in the Air," there's that fruity, childlike British whimsy characteristic of many pop-psychedelic hybrids from that short but intense period of British pop. This shouldn't be taken as a definitive representation of the Attack sound, though, as it has nothing from their four 1967-1968 Decca singles; most of the tracks from those have shown up on various artist compilations. Incidentally, the Five Day Week Straw People album that precedes the Attack material on this disc is likewise average period British psychedelia. It's pretty similar to the Attack demos, but a tad artier, as the songs fit into a loose concept of vignettes in the lives of average British people during a typical weekend. ~ Richie Unterberger, All Music Guide

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